Blaire Busack

Blaire Busack is the Principal at the Institute of Technology and Academics.  She grew up in a very small town in rural Iowa but moved to Wisconsin to attend college in Madison.  While attending Edgewood College, Blaire found her passion for teaching.  During her field work experiences in Madison, she realized there was a great need for highly qualified teachers in our cities.  Upon visiting Milwaukee, her passion for urban education only grew, and in 2009 Blaire chose to call Milwaukee home.

Blaire began teaching middle school at a small choice school in the city.  While teaching she quickly realized the need for strong school leaders and began to work on her Masters degree at Concordia University.  Since that time Blaire has been a reading specialist, an interventionist, an instructional coach, a dean of students, and now a principal.

Blaire truly loves being a part of the ITA staff and has loved to watch the school thrive over the years.  When Blaire is not working with scholars she enjoys boating, festivals, and spending time with her children.  

Jessica Schwamb

Jessica Schwamb is the Administrative Assistant at the Institute of Technology and Academics. She grew up in  New Berlin, WI. People have always been a passion for her, and she enjoys getting to know the young scholars at ITA and their families.

Jessica went to Concordia University of Wisconsin and graduated with her Bachelor’s Degree of Sciences: Biology. She also is a licensed certified nursing assistant (CNA). After she graduated, she spent some time taking care of the elderly as a CNA at a nursing home. Since then, she has expanded the ages of care to younger children as well. She has been a nanny and a tutor to children in kindergarten -middle school.

She began working at ITA in the winter of 2017. She is excited for another great year with ITA scholars, ITA families, and ITA coworkers. When not working at the school, she loves to read books and watch scary movies with hot chocolate and a blanket. She also loves to bake.

Annette Anderson

Annette Anderson is the 4K teacher at the Institute of Technology and Academics. She grew up in Milwaukee, WI. She has always wanted to teach. While going to college to obtain her teaching degree, she spent her summers tutoring,  teaching summer school, and teaching hearing impaired students .

Once graduating from Martin Luther College, she began her teaching career in Illinois at the primary grade level. She then expanded her teaching by educating  developmentally disabled children.  After having children of her own, she went back to school and received a degree in Early Childhood Education. She has worked with ages 3-5 for over 10 years.  She was excited to recently move back to the Milwaukee area.

Annette began teaching at ITA the spring of 2017. She is thrilled to be teaching in the 4k classroom this year. When Annette is not teaching, she enjoys spending time with family, traveling and loves to cook and bake.

Olivia Torrance

Olivia Torrance is the K5 Teacher at the Institute of Technology and Academics. She grew up in Denver, Colorado and attended the University of Northern Colorado  for her college career to study Elementary Education. Ms. Torrance has always dreamed of being a teacher and grew up loving education from an early age while spending many of her school years in the classroom with her parents. Ms. Torrance’s career has allowed her to teach Technology, Pre-Kindergarten, and Kindergarten before her path landed her in Milwaukee. She cannot wait to share her lifelong passion for learning and watch her scholars grow throughout the entire year.

When Ms. Torrance is not at school she loves to: read books, watch movies, go hiking (she’s even done a mountain that is 14,000 feet!), plan her wedding, travel and spend time with her loved ones.

Selena Mathews

Selena Mathews is the amazing 1st Grade Teacher at the Institute of Technology.  The school year of 2017 -2018 will be her third year teaching at ITA, but her ninth year teaching altogether.  Ms. Mathews not only enjoys having fun with the scholars in her class, but also any scholar in the building.  You would often see her hugging a scholar or dancing in the hallways.

Ms. Mathews was born and raised in Milwaukee, WI.  The majority of her elementary learning through high school, was in the Germantown and Menomonee Falls School District.  Following High School, Ms. Mathews was accepted into Marquette University on a full academic scholarship.  After attending for several years, she ultimately transferred to Bryant and Stratton College to receive a more intimate learning experience.  Ms. Mathews completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee.

Ms. Mathews’s view on teaching could be quickly summed in one beautiful quote.  “Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breathe away.”  Ms. Mathews says, “Find a moment throughout the day to focus on when things aren’t going your way.  I’m sure you will find several moments that were great within that day, if you make an effort to look.  While teaching, I can always find a million things about each child that is exceptional.  I remember to focus on that when we are facing challenges together.”

Brittney Neibert

Brittney Neibert is the 2nd grade teacher at the Institute of Technology and Academics. She grew up in Greenfield Wisconsin and attended the University of Wisconsin- Green Bay for her college degree in middle childhood-early adolescent education.  Ms. Neibert has always had the passion for teaching since she was a child. This is her second year teaching at ITA however she has been working in the education field for about 5 years now. Ms. Neibert has a high expectation for her scholars and is constantly pushing them to do their best, which is why she decided to loop up with her first graders from last year. Having a strong first grade class with a solid foundation will get her students moving to where they need to be socially, emotionally, and academically.

When Ms. Neibert is not teaching she enjoys hiking, biking, running, walking her black lab hunter and hanging out with close family and friends.  

Stephanie Von Rueden

Stephanie Von Rueden is the 3rd grade teacher at the Institute of Technology and Academics.  She has wanted to be a teacher from the young age of 10. After graduating high school she immediately started pursuing a career in teaching.  During her field work experiences in Milwaukee, she realized there was a great need for qualified, committed teachers in our cities.  After working in classrooms for field work and student teaching she decided to stay in Milwaukee and teach in an urban setting.

Stephanie began her first year teaching with ITA as the 2nd grade teacher in the school year of 2016-2017.  After building such strong relationships with the students she decided to loop up with her scholars and teach them in 3rd grade as well. She believes that strong relationships with students is one of the key factors of success.

In October of 2017, Stephanie will be getting married and will be changing her name from Ms. Von Rueden to Mrs. Priesgen. She is excited to get to celebrate this with the scholars since last year they celebrated her engagement. When Stephanie is not working with her scholars, she is playing softball, going for a run, or hanging out by a campfire with her friends and family.

Kayla Gratz

Kayla Gratz is the 4th grade teacher at the Institute of Technology and Academics and is new to our school this year. She was born in Milwaukee but grew up in Waukesha with her family. After attending high school in Greendale, she attended college at UW Waukesha where she worked in the Pre-College/ Diversity Center. Here she gained her passion for working in urban schools and working with children. She transferred to University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee and finished her Bachelor’s Degree in Early Childhood Education fall of 2015.

Since then, Kayla has had the opportunity to teach 3K/4K at a preschool spring of 2016. From there she joined an urban school in Milwaukee where she taught kindergarten and 3rd grade. She truly enjoys sharing her passion of teaching with her students and finding new and exciting ways to keep them engaged throughout the day as well as the school year.

Kayla is truly excited to be teaching at ITA and join such a great school family. When she is not at school Kayla enjoys playing volleyball and softball and sharing her time with family and friends.

Domonique Montriel

Domonique Montriel is currently  the 5th grade teacher here at ITA. Domnique  also taught the K5-8th grade science curriculum during the 2016-2017 school year. Known as Ms. Montriel to students and parents; Ms. Montriel has been with ITA for the 2 years and we will be happy to have her for many more.

Ms. Montriel was born and raised on the north side of Milwaukee, WI.  She attended Lee elementary grade school, followed by Rufus king high school. In high school, Ms. Montriel excelled in all of her academic studies including band where she became an outstanding clarinet player.  After her high school graduation in 2004, Ms. Montriel moved to Dallas, Texas where she enrolled in college for a Bachelor's degree in Business Management of Science. During her time in college, Ms. Montriel became a substitute teacher for the Cedar Hill school district in Cedar Hill, Texas. While serving as a substitute teacher, Ms. Montriel fell in love with the idea of becoming a grade school teacher. After

completing college (university of Phoenix / cedar hill Texas college) Ms. Montriel moved back to her hometown of Milwaukee, Wisconsin and started her first year of teaching at Urban Day school. She worked as an in-house Teacher her first year. She then taught K4, 4th grade and middle school during her time at Urban Day. Ms. Montriel also taught  4th/ 5th grade science for Renaissance elementary school in Kenosha. In her own quote, Ms. Montriel explains why she loves teaching.

“I’ve currently been teaching as a classroom teacher for 7 years. I can definitely say that I really enjoy what I do each and every day. I enjoy the interaction that I have with the students. I love to see the little light bulb that pops on in their heads whenever I teach them something new, and it connects. It’s actually very cool to see the growth a child can make when someone takes the time to invest in their academic and social development.”

When Ms. Montriel is not working, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends. She also enjoys being physically active in the gym.

Janice I

Matthew Nichols


Matthew Nichols Matthew Nichols is the new Reading Teacher for the 6th, 7th and 8th grade students. This will be Mr. Nichols first year at the Institute of Technology, but his nineteenth year teaching overall. with developmentally disabled students, and has been a Reading interventionist He has taught kindergarten, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, 5th grade, worked for middle school students.


Mr. Nichols has taught in the school districts of Brown Deer, Waukesha, Greenfield, and Oconomowoc. He has also been a baseball coach for sixteen years and was a varsity coach of baseball, softball and Deer, Wisconsin and graduated from Brown Deer High School in 1987. He also football at Brown Deer High School. Mr. Nichols was born and raised in Brown
Science Degree, in Elementary Education and was a player for the university’s graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater with a Bachelor of Science Degree and was a player for the university's varsity basketball program

Mr. Nichols is a published author of poetry and screenplays, and loves to share his passion of reading and writing with his students. His love of teaching and passion for making strong relationships with students, parents and the people he works with, are the things he strives for Mr. Nichols is not teaching he enjoys writing, acting in commercials and film, on a daily basis. He is proud to be a part of the ITA staff and school. When hiking, camping and spending time with family and friends.


Keiara Gallien

Keiara Gallien is the Middle Math Teacher at the Institute of Technology and Academics. She grew up in Milwaukee, WI, but traveled to Jackson, Tennessee to attend college at Lane College, where she studied Mathematics. While at college tutoring her fellow peers, she realize that she could really teach Math to anyone. She returned back to Milwaukee after completing her degree, to teach in our urban community.

Keiara started her teaching career with MPS at Washington High School, teaching Algebra and Geometry. She stayed at Washington H.S. for almost three years. From there she moved around to WCLL, United to Serve Academy, Next Door Foundation, Assata High School. After her experience in different high schools, she realize that her high school students were missing so many early math skills. So she came to the understanding that she needed to start with the lower grades, so by the time her students got to high school they will be well prepared and Milwaukee’s rate of students repeating Algebra over or the 9th will decrease.

With Keiara’s knowledge of high school, she knows what is expected when our scholars here at ITA make it to high school.  She is excited to be joining our ITA family. And she is ready to push our scholars to level they need to be in order to make it through the next level which is high school then college.

When Keiara is not working she loves to travel and experience new things and places. She also loves spending time with her two beautiful daughters. She is adventurous and loves to have fun.

Max Walker

Max Walker is a part of the Behavior Management Team.  Max is from Decatur, Illinois and moved to Milwaukee 67 years ago.  Max is an athlete and received several scholarships but chose Indiana University because it was a big 10 school.  While at IU, Max was the captain of the basketball team and lead the team in scoring.  After college, Max returned to Milwaukee and became a teacher at Rufus King High School.

Max retired from Milwaukee public schools after 38 years of service.  He enjoyed a few years of retirement but missed working with kids.  Max joined the ITA staff in 2015 as a physical education teacher.  Max is now part of a team that helps build ITA’s classroom and school culture.  

Max enjoys all sports, but his favorite is tennis.  In his spare time he also enjoys building leadership in  kids  by hiring and training them to work for the Milwaukee Recreation Department.  He has received numerous lifetime achievement awards for his work in recreation as well as teaching, he has also received recognition from his church.

Darius Harris

Henry Green

Coarlean Burt


Coralean Burt is the 2nd grade Teacher Assistant for Institute of Technology and Academics. She grew up in Milwaukee WI I attended Washington High School. Cora knew early on that she wanted a career in education.  After graduation, she attended MATC and pursued a degree in early childhood education.  Cora began her career in various early childhood centers but realized that she wanted more.  Cora wanted to be in an elementary school, so that she could enhance her teaching abilities and impact student learning more at the grade school level.  Cora loves being able to work with children everyday and has been able to put her passion for teaching to great use at ITA.  

Cora loves to go out to eat.  You could spot Cora at a few of her favorite restaurants around Milwaukee.  She loves Buffalo Wild Wings, Red Lobster, and Botanas.  Cora also loves to dance.  Every Sunday you will find Cora at her church where she enjoys attending services and singing in the choir.

Monica Closner

Amber Easter

Amber Easter  is the K5 Teacher Assistant and the Science Curriculum Teacher at the Institute of Technology and Academics.  She was born and raised in the countryside of El Dorado, Arkansas and later moved to Milwaukee, WI in 2000. Amber attended Custer High School where she graduated in 2002. She carried out her studies as  a Early Childhood Teacher for 13 years at Childcare Centers throughout the Milwaukee area. Amber decided to further her education at M.A.T.C where she is currently enrolled in the Teachers Education Program. Although this is her first year at ITA,  her skills, ability,  and love of teaching easily carry into all her classrooms. She is very excited to be a part of the Institute of Technology and Academics team and can’t wait to share her passion of learning with all the scholars.

When Amber is not teaching, she is busy creating new dances for her dance team THE EXPLODING STARS, cooking, reading, going to the movies, having game night,  doing arts and crafts or DIY projects. She is also loves to spend time with her loving children (3) boys  and (1) beautiful daughter and eating at her favorite restaurants: Cici’s Pizza, Golden Corral, and ColdStone Creamery.

Jasmine Owens

Jasmine Owens will be the k4 Teacher Assistant at the Institution Of Technology And Academics . This will be Jasmine first year teaching at ITA, jasmine been working with children for about 8 years, she is a  certified child care provider, she received her certificates through 4c’s for children located in Milwaukee. She will be working towards her degree in Early Childhood Education.

Jasmine was born in Milwaukee, WI and raised in Madison, Wisconsin with her aunt, she moved back to Milwaukee in 2003 where she attended  North Division High School where she played basketball and tennis all four years she also  received her  High School Diploma in 2007 where she received her first scholarship to University Of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She  was the first in her family to attend a College University were she studied Criminal Justice for 1 year after finishing up that year at UWM, Jasmine realized criminal justices was not her field. Jasmine started looking towards Child Care after taking courses, she found herself working at a childcare facility after working she realized that working with children is what she wanted to do. Jasmine also received her licenses in the healthcare field where she work part time. Jasmine is very excited to be apart of the ITA family.

When Ms. Jasmine Is not working she enjoys spending time with her two beautiful children (1) boy 1 (girl) going to the park and eating out at favorite restaurants Applebee's, Red Lobster, IHOP and B.D. Mongolian Grill. She also like working out at the gym or home, cleaning and watching her favorite tv shows Law & Order SVU, Criminal Minds and Blue Bloods, Ninja Turtle or Disney channel.